When asked during an interview with NBC television’s “Meet the Press” program about why he lost in such places, he quipped: “Well, because poor people don’t vote.”

“I mean, that’s just a fact. That’s a sad reality of American society.”

But Sanders insisted that “we have to transform” that trend.

Excerpts of the interview were provided on Saturday, a day before they were due to air.

Sanders noted that he had succeeded in getting many young voters on board, but has had a harder time getting his message across to lower income earners.